We are fortunate to have passes to the Monterey Bay Aquarium for the entire time we are in Monterey! Last week we had a behind-the-scenes tour of the facility. The aquarium is housed at the site of the old Hovden Sardine Cannery.
|Julie Packard with a model of the proposed aquarium in the 1970's. The Hovden Cannery is in the background. Photo courtesy of The Monterey Bay Aquarium|
The establishment of the aquarium was the idea of several academics from San Jose State University and Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Center in 1970’s. They, along with Nancy Burnett and Julie Packard recognized a need for ocean education and literacy. Nancy and Julie appealed to their father David Packard (of Hewlett-Packard) who provided the funding for the aquarium they envisioned. Today, Julie serves as Executive Director and Vice Chair of the Aquarium's Board of Trustees. David Packard, in the aquarium’s Policy Statement states, "The purpose of Monterey Bay Aquarium is to provide a facility to expand the public interest in and enjoyment of the marine life and the environment of Monterey Bay and the surrounding areas and shoreline."
In addition to spectacular displays, the staff at the aquarium conducts research on marine organisms, rescues and rehabilitates sea otters, and establishes safe seafood educational materials including a iPhone App (Seafood Watch) to educate the public on seafood sustainability.
|Where in the World is the camouflaged fish?|
|An incredible example of bioluminescence. The colored areas flash from top to bottom.|